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.40 sw suitable for deer?

Discussion in 'Hunting, Fishing & Camping' started by el_jewapo, Feb 20, 2005.

  1. el_jewapo


    Feb 1, 2005
    i got my first glock yesterday, a model 22 and i love it.

    i can't imagine i will ever use it for deer hunting, but it is legal for deer in my state based on barrel length.

    i'll be sticking with my 7mm mag or bow for the most part, but i'd like to know if i have the option to take a deer efficiently with my glock 22?
  2. Soldat

    Soldat Big Dwarf Rodeo

    Apr 23, 2003
    Central Texas
    Nope, 10mm is a much stronger round and it's only marginal for taking deer sized game. Maby as a finishing shot to put the deer down after you've wounded it, but definatly not as a primary hunting gun.

  3. Minuteman

    Minuteman Jeff Gannon???

    The .40 is fine for deer.

    The bigger issue is the pistol. Most people would not feel confident of a clean kill with an pistol of that size, beyond about 25 feet.

    The .40 from a ruger carbine, no doubt. I don't think I would choose it, for survival sure, but not for sport.
    Others may disagree.

  4. isp2605


    Oct 2, 2002
    What's your state laws say about the .40?
    In IL neither the .40 nor the Glock 22 would be legal for deer. The round has to produce 500 ft/lbs of energy in a factory load and can't use a semi-auto handgun.
    Other states may have other restrictions so you need to check for those.
  5. el_jewapo


    Feb 1, 2005
    all it says in the guide book is that a hand gun has to have atleast a 4" barrel. both semi auto and revolvers. the only thing it says about caliber is no rimfire.
  6. akbound


    Mar 31, 2004
    Without knowing what state you are talking about it's going to be impossible to give you any kind of an informed answer. Your state probably has an online resource at your Fish & Game (Department of Natural Resources, DNR, or whatever it goes by in your state) where you can get a more definitive answer.

    Failing in that, you should be able to call your state DNR and receive an answer. (Just make sure you document with whom you spoke, and when.) Better yet, if possible get a hard copy of said regulation(s).


    P.S. As to your question of suitability. The .40 S&W would be a very marginal cartridge. Under the best of conditions, with very careful use, at close range, it will work. But it is certainly not going to provide any leeway for marginal hits. Like Minuteman, I don't think I'd use it for normal sport hunting for deer. But under survival situations I wouldn't hesitate. (And I own a Ruger PC4GR.)
  7. AR15'em

    AR15'em Roll Tide??

    Feb 12, 2002
    Golf Course, GA
    This pretty much says it all!
  8. I'd say it also depends upon the size of your deer.

    Here in Virginia I've seen anterless deer that weighted less than 50 lbs field dressed. Inside 25 yards on a small deer like that with a 180gr JHP I'd take the shot. I think the .40 would do just fine.

    On a larger doe or buck past 25 yards, nope.

    VA only requires handgun to be at least .23 Calilber and more than 350 Ft Lbs of muzzle energy. IIRC there are some 9mm loads that make that.
  9. chuck71403


    Feb 19, 2005
    If you are accurate with the .40 at the same ranges then it would be plenty of gun with good shot placement.Down here people illegally take deer with .22 quite often.
  10. chuck71403


    Feb 19, 2005
    I meant at the same ranges you would use your bow.
  11. Michigun

    Michigun Miss Michigan?

    Mar 1, 2001
    Michigan, USA
    Kept at bow ranges it would be fine… even with the large whitetails here in Michigan.
  12. SDGlock23

    SDGlock23 Glockoholic

    A 40 will do it's job but the biggest issue with using one for deer hunting would be the short sight radius; pretty much not being able to hit accurately unless it's rather close. The Ruger PC4 carbine would be preferred over a pistol for that reason alone. Don't believe crap about it not being powerful enough to take one cleanly.
  13. ILikeFtLbs


    Nov 4, 2002
    I've done it, and I can tell you this: with a good hit, expect to track the deer 80 yards or more with very little blood. Whatever you do, aim for the lungs.
  14. I have not used a .40, but this sounds about right to me.

    Use a bow hunting mindset. Wait 20 minutes before tracking. Keep shots inside 25 yards if possible. Only shoot as far as you can hit an 8" pie plate all the time with off-hand shots. Wait for a nice sleepy heart-lung broadside shot.

    Do not miss your shot. Do not wound the deer.
  15. Big_Jim


    Sep 7, 2001
    I did it. Aimed for the chest and hit a bit high. Took out the spine and the deer dropped on the spot. It was a matter of opportunity but, I would do it again. I have confidence in the 40 at close range. As a primary? No. But the G22 make a great secondary.
  16. I've heat shot deer with a .44 magnum that ran that far or further. A deer can cover 80 yards in a few seconds. That's still a pretty quick stop.
  17. Sixgun_Symphony

    Sixgun_Symphony NRA4EVR

    Apr 16, 2002
    The .40 Smith & Wesson comes pretty close to the .38 WCF (.38-40) cartridge in performance. The old .38 WCF was used to kill alot of deer when chambered in a Winchester rifle, a .40 S&W cartridge chambered in a Ruger carbine will be fine.
  18. MikeG22

    MikeG22 CLM

    Jun 24, 2002
    San Diego
    Why would you wait 20 minutes before tracking it?
  19. Poohgyrr

    Poohgyrr trout fear me!

    Back in the 1960's, before 7-11s and grocery stores on every corner, an old family friend used to harvest our coastal deer with a .38 Special. Accuracy is a key thing here; he knew his limitations and obeyed them.

    The 9X19 is legal in some states today, and works for appropriate sized deer.

  20. Michigun

    Michigun Miss Michigan?

    Mar 1, 2001
    Michigan, USA
    Yup, it's legal here in Michigan.